Persistent sciatic vessels associated with an arteriovenous malformation

J Anat. 2001 Sep;199(Pt 3):349-51. doi: 10.1046/j.1469-7580.2001.19930349.x.


The sciatic artery is the major arterial supply to the lower limb bud at an early embryological stage. It primarily originates from the dorsal root of the umbilical artery. After the 22 mm embryological stage, the sciatic artery involutes and the femoral artery system develops as the major inflow source to the lower limb. In the adult, remnants of the sciatic artery persist as the proximal portion of the inferior gluteal artery, the popliteal and peroneal arteries (Williams et al. 1989). It is suggested that either failure in development of the femoral system or failure in regression of the sciatic artery results in persistence of this artery (Arey, 1965). We report a rare example of persistent sciatic artery (PSA) accompanied by arterio-arterial and arteriovenous anastomoses.

Publication types

  • Letter

MeSH terms

  • Arteries / abnormalities
  • Arteriovenous Malformations / embryology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Leg / blood supply*